the pursuit of happiness

Julie Neidlinger has a great post up about the pursuit of happiness resulting only in increased sadness. Check it out.

here is the last line of an excellent post:

And yet I still go after the carrot. The pursuit of happiness ensures that I will be anything but happy. I have what I need, but I’ve not taken time to figure out that it is enough.

The pursuit of happiness as presented by Julie is yet another aspect of The Lie that the enemy uses to cause us so much distraction, wasted time and misery.

UPDATE:

Like TIm Keller (quoting C.S. Lewis and Derrick Kidner) says “in the morning it is always Leah:

The second bit of bad news is, all life here is marked by cosmic disappointment. Cosmic disappointment. I want to say something quickly. Having read this thing and thought about this passage, I want you to know that I love Leah and I am protective of her in this story. But for a minute I have to tell you that she represents something very bad. One of the most fascinating things in the narrative is the way it turns on you, because here is Jacob saying finally, finally I’m going to have happiness in this life. Finally, finally I’ve got Rachel. But, behold, in the morning it was Leah.

And there is a very interesting little commentary written by one of my favorite writers, Derrick Kidner, and he puts it this way. Derrick Kidner says, “But in the morning, behold, it was Leah. This is a miniature of our disillusionment experienced from Eden onwards.” You know what he’s saying? He’s saying this is a miniature, a fact that everybody in this room needs to know, and that is this: No matter what your hopes for a project, no matter what your hopes for marriage, no matter what your hopes for love, no matter what your hopes for a career, no matter what you have hopes in, in the morning it will always be Leah. No matter what you think is Rachel, it will always be Leah. Nobody ever put it any better than C. S. Lewis in his chapter on hope. He says:

Most people if they really learn to look into their own heart [and that’s what I’m urging you to do right now] most people if they really learn to look into their own hearts would know that they do want and want acutely something that cannot be had in this world. There are all sorts of things in this world that offer to give it to you, but they never keep their promise. The longings which arise in us when we first fall in love or first think of some foreign country or first take up some subject that excites us are longings which no marriage, no travel, no learning can ever really satisfy. I am not speaking of what would ordinarily be called unsuccessful marriages or failures of holidays and so on. I’m speaking of the very best possible ones. There is always something we have grasped at. There’s always something in that first moment of longing but fades away in the reality. The spouse may be a good spouse. The scenery has been excellent. It turned out to be a good job. But it’s evaded us. In the morning it’s always Leah.

Now the reason you have to understand that is because it’s painful to overhear people’s lives. You notice what I said. I didn’t say overhear people’s words, because people don’t say these things out loud. But you hear it in their life. You hear it. I overhear it when I see people’s choices. I overhear it when I see people’s attitudes, when I see what they’re doing. And that is this. You overhear people saying, essentially, Oh, I’m going to have such a career. I’m going to get myself a hunk. I’m going to get myself a babe. And I’m going to live in this place, and I’m going to live in this place, and I’m going to live in this place. And I am going to have a life. In the morning it’s always Leah. This is a miniature of the disillusionment which is our lot from Eden onwards.

HT tip to Reformation Theology

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One Response

  1. […] found a post linking back to one of mine, which led me to an article and to write the following blog post. I hope to blog on […]

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